If you have ever been on a summer hike, you must have seen some hikers go around wearing these cute strapped sandals. I know what you must have thought to yourself. Why do they get to wear sandals when I have to hike in these large and heavy boots? Can and should I get those sandals as well?
Well, the sandals in question are the Chacos sandals that are pretty famous in the hiking community. They have been around for years, and their designs are unique and easy to spot. If you like to go hiking or walk in nature in summer, then you must get a pair of them!
Today’s guide will tell you everything you need to know about Chacos sandals, whether you should get them, and what you should know before getting them. So, if you are interested in learning more about the topic, I recommend that you keep on reading!
What is Chaco?
Chaco is a company that produces various types of shoes, including the Chacos sandals. If you check out their website, you will find slides, sandals, shoes, boots, and some types of gear suitable for men, women, and children. They even have dog collars and leashes that you can try out!
There is no doubt that the most famous product from this company is the Chacos sandals. These sandals have adjustable straps and a great sole that will provide you with great stability. You might not think that sandals are suitable for hiking, but once you try the Chacos, I am sure you will change your mind!
Why Should I Wear Hiking Sandals?
When going on a hike, a lot of people typically wear hiking boots or hiking shoes. With the invention of hiking sandals, there was a real revolution in the hiking experience. Hiking sandals are the best thing for summer hikes, and you should consider getting a pair of Chacos as soon as possible!
There are many reasons why hiking sandals are great, but I will start with the obvious one. Wearing Chacos on a hike will make you feel very comfortable as they will not weigh down your feet as a hiking boot will. Hiking boots are quite heavy and can make your feet hot and sweaty. If you have Chacos, that will not be a problem that you have to think about!
The second reason why you need some Chacos is the fact that they will not blister your feet. Yes, you will need to get used to the Chaco straps, but you will have no problem wearing them once you do. You can add a pair of socks while getting used to them so that you can protect the feet from blisters!
Another great thing about Chacos is that you can use them to cross a river or spring. This is something that you cannot do with all hiking shoes. You will have to take them off and take your socks off to cross the water, whereas, with the Chacos, you can go right ahead and cross the water!
People who have never worn Chacos before might think that they lead to decreased stability, but that is not the case at all. If the sandals are a perfect fit for your feet, they will provide you with stability and arch support. At the same time, they can adapt to your foot shape.
The only thing you need to worry about is the adjustable straps. Once you wrap them around your feet, you will be able to walk with them on any type of terrain.
Easy to remove debris
Have you ever had a pebble in your hiking shoe? I had that happen to me, and it was very uncomfortable. I had to stop my hike, take off my shoe, remove the pebble, and put my shoe back on to be able to continue on my way.
If you wear Chacos, you will never have problems removing debris from your feet. You will be able to do that in a couple of seconds and without even removing the sandal from your foot. That further contributes to the beauty of these sandals!
How Are My Chacos Supposed to Fit?
The sizing of the Chacos is in part based on the Chaco straps. The sandal consists of straps and a sole. Depending on what sandal you choose, you can have fewer or more straps. Let’s see how you should fit your Chacos sandals!
Step 1 – Foot shape
The first thing you should do is measure your foot length and width. You should make sure that you have the right measurements so you can choose the correct size sandals.
If you cannot measure your feet at home, you can go to any Chaco store and have the salesperson help you out. They even have special measures that will tell you the size sandals you need!
Step 2 – Choose the type of sandal
You can divide Chacos sandals into two main groups – the sandals with a toe strap and those without a toe strap. Depending on which one you choose, you will have to adjust the straps when fitting the sandals.
Step 3 – Adjusting sandals without a toe loop
If you decide to go for the sandals without a toe loop, you will have one less strap to adjust. First, you will need to unbuckle the sandal and loosen the straps. Then, you should put in the foot the sandal.
Once you do that, you will have to tighten the straps. Start by adjusting the knuckle or heel strap, then move on to the buckle strap. After adjusting the straps, buckle the sandal, and that should be it!
Step 4 – Adjusting sandals with toe loop
Unlike the double strap sandals mentioned above, these are triple strap sandals where you have a bit more adjusting to do. The first thing you do is unbuckle the sandal, tighten the straps from the back to the front, and then put your foot in the sandal.
This is where the tightening process starts. To do this the right way, you need to know the order for tightening. First, you should focus on the knuckle strap, move on to the toe loop, and adjust the buckle strap. Finish off by checking if everything is in place and feeling comfortable.
Step 5 – Make sure everything feels comfortable
Even if you think you have adjusted everything, you might find some problems with the fit when you get up and start walking around.
It would help if you remembered never to let your feet move or slide around the sandal. This does not mean that you should tighten the straps so much that you feel uncomfortable. You should tighten them enough so that the foot can stay in place.
If your foot slides around in the sandal, you might risk an injury. So, it is important always to adjust all straps and make sure everything is okay with the sandal before starting your hike.
Should I Size Up or Down for Chacos?
Before buying your Chacos, you need to find the right size for your feet. Having the right size sandals is very important because they can contribute to your type of experience. If the sizing is not proper, you will face a lot of problems on your hike.
The first thing you should know is that the size Chacos you need can be different from the size shoes you wear every day. This is why you need to measure your feet before deciding on the size.
Depending on the length and width of your feet, you can decide which size Chacos to get. If you wear a half size, you should be ready to move to the nearest whole size. This is because Chacos do not come in half sizes – you can only find them in whole sizes.
I do not recommend ever going for half-size smaller Chacos. What you should do is move up a half size to the nearest whole size. Instead of ordering from the Chacos website, it would be best if you can go to the store and try the sandals out before buying them.
Chacos Wide vs. Regular or Medium – Which Size Should You Buy?
Another vital thing to think about when buying Chacos is the wide, regular, and medium-size that you have to consider. The size you get will depend on your foot and what feels comfortable. Measuring and adjusting are key to getting a perfect size.
The arch length is critical in this part of the decision-making process. It can help you determine the size Chacos you need.
If your arch length is smaller than the length of your foot, you should go for the regular size. If the arch length is larger than the length of your foot, then you should go for Medium or Wide Chacos. Once you decide what the right arch fit is, you can decide on the perfect size.
Are Chacos Supposed to Hurt at First?
With Chacos, you will need some time to get used to them. Once you get them, you will not be able to take them on a hike immediately. You will have to break them in before taking them on a longer trip.
If you do not break in your Chacos before wearing them on a hike or long-distance walk, you will find that the sole might cause blistering to the foot. At the same time, you might have difficulty wrapping the Chaco straps around the foot.
If the wrap-around straps are not adjusted well, your feet will move around the sandal as you walk. That might lead to slipping and other problems. Also, your feet will get tired faster.
So, before going on a hike with your Chacos, get acquainted with the way the straps work and break them in. Trust me; this advice will save you from a lot of trouble!
How to Wear Chacos Without Toe Loop?
There are a ton of Chacos sandals to choose from. Some come with a pinky toe strap; others come with a big toe strap. There are some with a single wide strap and a few narrow straps. You get the jest, and there is some thinking to do before deciding on only one pair of sandals.
A lot of people find the Chacos without toe loop to be the most comfortable ones. I get what they say because you can put on, take off, and adjust these sandals without a problem. Also, if your feet tend to get cold, you can add socks and still wear your sandals with no problem at all!
If you decide to go with the Chacos without toe loop, I would like to mention again how you can fit them to your feet. The first thing to do is unbuckle, loosen the top strap, and then loosen the low strap.
After doing this, you put your foot in the sandal, tighten the top strap first and then move on to tightening the back strap. Buckle the sandal, try walking around and see if everything fits well. If it feels good, you are good to go!
That is everything you should know about hiking sandals. Even though there are a lot of companies that make this type of footwear, the Chacos hiking sandals are the best ones you can get. Their innovative design will blow you away, and you will never want to try out any other sandals.
Before going on your first hike with the Chacos, make sure you break them in and learn how to adjust the straps. That is key to having a good time and not having any problems on the hike. I hope that this guide helped you learn how to choose the perfect size Chacos and how to adjust Chaco straps.
Let me know in the comments if you have tried Chacos before or if you are yet to give them a try. I would love to know more about your experience, so make sure you share it with the rest of the hiking community and me!